Brunswick Acres is closed again today, making this the sixth school day to be cancelled since last Monday due to power outages caused by Hurricane Sandy.  Many of us were left without power, some for a longer time period than others. As frustrating as this has been and continues to be for many in our area, the sentiment that seems to be shared by most is that we are feeling very fortunate compared to our friends and families who lost everything along the coast

During these times, we try to do what we can by making monetary donations, dropping off supplies to shelters, inviting people into our homes, traveling to areas that need help with clean up and more.  These efforts are so important for our state to recover from this unprecedented storm damage.  

In an effort to provide a way for kids to help, I created a project called, 
"Shells for NJ Shores" .  It is an art project in which teachers and students everywhere are invited to participate to help Sandy victims. The idea is that students can create and sell "shell-themed" art, make a donation to the organization of their choice and track our progress online so we can see how our heart-work is making a difference.  

To learn more about Shells for NJ Shores, click here or on the image above:

Please pass this along to anyone you think may want to give their children a chance to assist in the recover and rebuilding efforts in New Jersey.

To all of my students and B.A. parents, I hope you are doing well and have had your power restored.  I hope school will be open for us all soon. 

We are currently in the lead in the $5000.00 Kris Wine Grant Contest!  In order to help spread the word and possibly get more votes, we are going to take this to the next level (and by this I mean we are going to make a MUSIC VIDEO of course)!

I downloaded the karaoke version of the popular song, “Call Me Maybe” by Carly Rae Jepsen, wrote new lyrics to promote our school for this contest and recorded myself singing our new version. 

To help students learn the words, I created this karaoke video with lyrics so they can practice singing and dancing at home. 

We are soon going to turn this song into a MUSIC VIDEO featuring students, staff and admin!

Please keep the votes rolling in! It will take dedicated voting each day by all of us to help us to stay in first place! 

Directions to vote:

* Click this link.
Note: You must be on a computer to vote, NOT a cell phone or iPad.

* "Like" the Kris Wine Facebook page.

* Click "Vote Now"

* Type, "Brunswick Acres" into the box and click "Search"

* Click on the red pin that appears on the map

* Check the box to vote next to our school's name.

* Vote once per day up until October 31st. 

* Help spread the word by sharing the link to this blog post!

Let's Make This Happen Together!!!!  

Thank you for supporting my students and our school!


Tomorrow kicks off the 2012-2013 school year for the students of Brunswick Acres Elementary School!  I am excited to hear what everyone has been up to over the summer and am looking forward to breaking out our art materials again.

Students, parents, teachers and staff are all invited to join me in creating a collaborative “Word Art” collage!


This is what our "Word Collage" looks like now.  I can't wait to post a pic of what it will look like when we are finished with it! 

Have a look below at artwork created by famous artists who incorporated letters into their work.

Need some inspiration for creating our "Word Art" Collage?  Check out some of the words on our other art bulletin board in the hallway!

Jenna and her mom popped into the art room this afternoon after school.  Jenna's mom had ordered a hard copy portfolio book in the Artsonia Gift Shop online. This book featured Jenna's artwork from Kindergaten through First grade. The book arrived in the mail today, and  I was so honored that Jenna's first preview of her portfolio book was with me.  

We flipped through each page, talking about our favorite lessons.  Take a look at the cover of Jenna's book and the page displaying her Fantastic Feline (above)!  Click on each photo to see larger versions.

This is the time of year when more students like to share their Artsonia products with me.  Check out a few student keepsakes below:

Parents, thank you for your participation with Artsonia.  This year, our gallery is ranked #2 in the state of NJ and #16 in the nation! Rankings are determined based on how many comments students receive, how many fans join student fan clubs, how many works of art are uploaded, how many artist statements students compose and how much fundraising we do.  

Artsonia donates 15% of all purchases back to our art program at B.A.
This money directly impacts students as it is spent on supplies and technologies that will enhance your child's art education.

Thank you for supporting your artists and our art program!

K-4th grade students created these interactive chalk drawings on their last days of art class.  Their objective was to draw a scene that they could then become a part of.  They had the option of working alone or with others.  This year, our district web and media non-consent policies were updated. Teachers are now allowed to post photos of students online (if parents did not send in a non-web/media release form).  Because of this change, we are able to share these creative images with the world. These are only a few of the photos taken this past week. More pics will be posted to the B.A. Art Blog soon.  Stay tuned.

Click "Fullscreen" for the best viewing experience of Jason's book.
Jason is in the 3rd grade.  He stops by the art room in the mornings before he heads off to his class.  Sometimes he just wants to say hello, while other times he likes to share his artwork and original stories.  

A couple of months ago, Jason expressed an interest in writing about adventures of superheroes.  He carried in his notebook filled with interesting story lines.  Jason's interest in writing and art reminded me of a special art and digital storytelling project I did with a few 4th and 5th graders last year.  Jason enjoyed hearing about how these students used the app Story Patch on our iPads to write and illustrate their stories.  He flipped through the printed versions of the student created books and asked if there was any chance he could write and illustrate a book too.

Jason decided to forego his recess time on several days and worked on his digital story until it was finally finished today.  He would have liked to work on it longer, but the iPads are being wiped tomorrow.  The pressure was on, but he was happy with his finished product.  

We hope you enjoy Jason's first digital story, "The Fantastic Three"! 

Learn more about the Story Patch app here: more digital stories by B.A. student artists on our Vimeo Video Channel: 

Ashlynn: Grade - 3 "Sunset"

Matthew: Grade- Kindergarten "Rainbow Fish"

Jenna: Grade 5 - "Sparkle Through the Trees"

Staff members who have worked in the South Brunswick School District for 20 years were recognized tonight at the Board of Education meeting.  Artists from each of the elementary schools were selected to have their artwork printed and gifted to the honorees.  Joanne Kerekes, Assistant Superintendent of Schools, reflected on some of the memories and special qualities of each employee who has reached this impressive milestone.  Mrs. Kerekes read artist statements written by student artists and their art teachers, and invited each artist to the podium to receive certificates of achievement before presenting their work to the 20 year folks.

The B.A. artists selected for this special award ceremony are Ashlynn (3rd grade), Matthew (Kindergarten) and Jenna (5th grade).  

Congratulations to our artists for being chosen for this special event and to the 20 year honorees!

Thank you to all three of our artists' parents for bringing your children to the Board of Education meeting.   It was a pleasure sharing this special evening with you.

Typically, the saying goes, "April showers bring May flowers".  It sure has been raining a lot this May though, so I guess we should be saying "May showers bring May flowers" in the art room.  

3rd grade artists viewed the work of artist Gale Kaseguma and are currently working on spring inspired tissue paper collages.  They are cutting, gluing, and applying tissue paper to design well balanced floral compositions.  

They are problem solving during this process and making creative decisions while they work.  For example, they are cutting and overlapping layers of lighter colors in order to create more contrast. If their stems are difficult to see, they are adding extra layers too.  They are also discovering that they can make new colors by overlapping two pieces of tissue paper.  We have mixed colors using paints and oil pastels in the past, but this is the first time they have created new colors using this medium.

Students are brushing Mod Podge onto their work with old paintbrushes. When this glue is dry, their artwork will reveal interesting textures and will have a glossy shine. 

See their work in progress in the slideshow above.  Expect to see these pieces in our B.A. Artsonia gallery when they are finished. 

See Gale Kaseguma's artwork here: 
Most 3rd graders in Mrs. Farber's class needed extra time to complete their Alice in Wonderland inspired Teacups.  As they finished, I allowed them to explore our new iPads. First, they learned how to take an online art assessment quiz. After they finished the quiz, they spent a few minutes learning how to take photos using PhotoBooth.  They found the "mirror" effect and many others to be hilarious.  Take a look at the photos above and you will see why! 

The creative idea of posing with iPads in front of their faces came from one of these students! Click on the images to see larger versions.   

This was the first time that students learned how to take photos using PhotoBooth.  In the future, students will be using our iPads to photograph their artwork and much more.  
Our district's literacy initiative this year is inspired by the book, Alice in Wonderland. Our entire community was invited to read and celebrate the story of Alice.  3rd graders drew stacked teacups after watching the "Un-Birthday Party" scene on YouTube.  Learn more about this lesson here: 
Shivani's and Ally's teacups were selected to be in a special "Alice in Wonderland" art exhibit at the Senior Center.  You can see their teacups in the photo above.  Exact dates and times will be announced soon.  Congratulations Ally and Shivani!